He became popular by a chance meeting with one of Hollywood’s biggest names, Tom Hanks, but today, Barkhad Abdi’s criminal past caught up with him. The 12 Years A Slave Actor was stopped at the Airport by the United States Custom and Immigration on his way back from London where he went to collect his BAFTA Award.
Star Tribune reports:
Minnesota actor Barkhad Abdi, who gained fame as a Somali pirate in the 2013 film “Captain Phillips,” was stopped briefly by U.S. customs officials in February while returning to the U.S. after accepting an award for his performance overseas.
Abdi, 28, is a permanent legal resident in the U.S. and several previous criminal offenses flagged him when he returned to the U.S., according to a local federal source with knowledge of the case.
He faces a possible hearing this week with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, which stopped him after he returned from accepting the British equivalent of the Oscar as a best supporting actor in the film. He was also nominated for an Oscar.
One of the offenses was a drug arrest in August 2012 in Iowa for possession of marijuana and khat. He has also been arrested on suspicion of credit card fraud in North Dakota and Minnesota. While the arrests might be considered minor, any sort of drug offense could result in immigration action against him, the source said. But it is unlikely Abdi, who came to the U.S. at 14 from Somalia by way of Yemen, would be deported because federal immigration authorities have shown little appetite for making a move for any but the most serious offenses, the source said.